Timberwolves starting lineup set except for the fifthpot
ผู้เขียน: | เวลา:2022-11-18 04:14 | เรียกดู:

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Timberwolves starting lineup set except for the fifth spot

The season begins Wednesday night, with Anthony Edwards, Karl-Anthony Towns, DAngelo Russell and Jaden McDaniels ready for introductions.

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Ideally,Chris Finchwould have settled on his fifth starter long ago. His preference would be to have such a role already well-defined, part of a set rotation. You cant always get what you want.

The Timberwolves are set to start their season, at Target Center, Wednesday night against Houston. Just who will start alongsideKarl-Anthony Towns, DAngelo Russell, Anthony EdwardsandJaden McDanielsisnt yet clear. It could beJosh Okogie, who is back from an ankle injury. OrJarred Vanderbilt, or evenTaurean Prince. At this point, Finch appears ready to allow the match up to determine his best starting five.

Obviously you want to have as much well-defined roles as possible, the Wolves coach said. But if we dont have a traditional starting five, and if we go matchup-to-matchup, thats just how were gonna do it. Its up to the guys to be professional and ready. Theyre still gonna play. It may just change somewhat how they play. And then theyre gonna have every opportunity earn their way into a bigger role.

Finch doesnt appear to have a set five he wants to go to down the stretch of close games. Again, matchup-to-matchup could be the determining factor.

I dont know that well have a standard five that well go to close, he said. We have so much experience with [Patrick Beverley] and Taurean and these guys. Teams tend to switch a lot down the stretch. So that will lend itself to different lineups.

Okogie was full-go in practice Monday and is expected to be available for Wednesdays opener. A decision onJordan McLaughlinsstatus hasnt been made. Both Okogie (ankle) and McLaughlin (groin) missed the Wolves final two preseason games. Both practiced Monday. For McLaughlin, it marked the first time hes had full participation since the injury.

Josh is full-go, Finch said. J-Mac is still working his way back. Its not clear we hope to have [McLaughlin] on Wednesday. But he needs another day of live action to figure it out.

The NBAs deadline for extension for players on rookie-level contracts came and went Monday without a new deal for Okogie, who was eligible for an extension. Okogie is set to become a restricted free agent after the season.

The Wolves on Monday picked up the third-year options, as expected, on Edwards and McDaniels.

Beverley will sit out Wednesday, serving a suspension he was given for shovingChris Paulin Game 6 of last seasons Western Conference finals. Will it be strange not having Beverley after having him throughout the preseason?

Its not that big of a thing, Finch said. If you had a guy who was hurt youd be in the same situation. At least this way we could plan for it.

• Finch said hed like to develop a rotation in which Towns andNaz Reidplay more together on the court, especially in situations where Towns is the spacer on the pick-and-roll and Reid the roller. Hes one of our more dynamic roll threats, really, Finch said of Reid. That gives us a different dynamic. Oftentimes theyll still put the five on KAT, so that gives the spacing for us.

• Russell said the camaraderie this Wolves team has reminds him of his time in Brooklyn, with the Nets team that made the 2019 playoffs. But this team, he said, has more energy. We have a lot of young guys that just bring energy naturally, Russell said.

NBA power rankings: Lakers, Nets are at the topStar Tribune NBA writer Chris Hine ranks the teams with the 2021-22 season about to tip off.

Kent Youngbloodhas covered sports for the Star Tribune for more than 20 years.

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